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The Public Right-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG) rulemaking has concluded. The PROWAG final rule has been published in the Federal Register. Please visit the Access Board’s PROWAG page for the guidelines.

Passenger Vessels Access Advisory Committee

Chapter 8 Vehicle Parking

Note: This chapter only applies to passenger vessels subject to subchapters K or H, except where sections are referenced by chapter 12 which addresses subchapters C and T vessels.

Comment: The committee discussed the parking process that occurs on a vehicle ferry. Parking on a typical ferry is a highly controlled activity versus the undirected parking which normally occurs in a city lot. Unlike landside parking lots, vehicles typically queue up in preparation to enter the ferry at a set time, with space generally provided on a first-come-first-serve basis. Vehicles entering the ferry are often directed by the crew to a particular lane and are required to fill the lane starting at the front of the ferry. Depending on the number of vehicles loaded and each vehicle’s weight, vehicles may also be directed to certain areas (particularly heavy trucks) to reduce their weight impact on the trim and stability of the ferry. When ferry demand is high, crew members ensure the spacing between vehicles is at a minimum thereby maximizing the carrying capacity of the ferry. Because of these factors, individual parking spaces are not designated on a ferry as in a city lot. Although lane markings are generally provided to assist drivers and crew members in aligning the vehicles in rows, parking lanes are seldom further demarcated into individual parking boxes because vehicle lengths vary and unused space is not acceptable during times of high demand.

Comment: The committee agreed that providing accessible parking on a ferry required an effective parking management plan plus design and construction requirements. The design and construction requirements must ensure the vehicle deck has the space available so that accessible parking can be provided when the need arises. The management plan must ensure that the need is identified before the loading process begins and that vehicles are arranged on the deck so that access aisles and accessible routes are provided. The committee noted that the access aisles must adjoin an accessible route which connects to all other accessible elements and spaces on the ferry. This allows individuals with disabilities to depart their vehicles and travel to any part of the ferry that is required to be accessible, just as other passengers are permitted to walk to other parts of the ferry.


208 Parking Spaces on Passenger Vessels Which Carry Vehicles

208.1 General. Where public parking is provided on passenger vessels, accessible parking spaces shall be provided in accordance with 208.

**EXCEPTION: **Where a passenger vessel does not have public toilet facilities and passengers are not required to leave their vehicles, this section does not apply.

Comment: The committee recognized that in small ferries, with short trip duration, the provision of accessible parking spaces might be difficult or impossible. The committee noted that on some small ferries, toilet facilities are not provided and passengers normally remain in their vehicles. For these reasons and because these small ferries usually have short crossings, the committee added an exception.

208.2 Number Required. Accessible parking spaces shall be provided in accordance with Table 208.2 and shall comply with 502.

Table 208.2 Accessible Parking Spaces

Total Parking Capacity Provided For the Public on the Passenger Vessel Minimum Required Number of Accessible Parking Spaces
1 to 25 1
26 to 50 2
51 to 75 3
76 to 100 4
101 to 150 5
151 to 200 6
201 to 300 7
301 to 400 8
401 to 500 9
501 to 1000 2 percent of total
1001 and over 20, plus 1 for each 100 over 1000

208.2.1 Not Used.

Comment: Not on ferries.

**208.2.2 Van Parking Spaces. **For every eight or fraction of eight accessible parking spaces required by 208.2, at least one shall be a van parking space complying with 502.

208.3 Not Used.

Comment: As crew members direct drivers to the positions in which they will park, identification signs are not needed and may cause confusion. In trips where no passengers need accessible parking, deck space that is used as access aisles and associated accessible routes may be occupied by vehicles. In such cases, identification signs and markings typically found in a landside parking lot could cause confusion to drivers who believe they are illegally parking in areas “reserved” for persons with disabilities. Vessel operators shall arrange vehicles requiring accessible loading areas and related accessible paths of travel to other accessible areas of the vessel. The arrangement of the vehicles is to result in the required loading areas and aisle as required in the fixed parking requirements of this chapter for cars, vans and buses.

Comment: It was noted that on ferries that load from both ends, the orientation of the vehicle must be accounted for in configuring the adjacent door swing, lift operating area and maneuvering clearances on the deck within the accessible loading area.

**208.4 Location. **Accessible parking spaces shall be located on the shortest accessible route to an accessible elevator, or if no elevator is provided, to accessible public areas on the same deck.

**EXCEPTION: **All van parking spaces shall be permitted to be grouped on one level of a parking structure.

Comment: Bus accommodation: For ferry vessels that carry over-the-road, transit and paratransit buses, if passengers are permitted to exit and enter the vehicle while onboard the vessel, an accessible path shall be provided from the vehicle to the other accessible facilities aboard the vessel.

209 Not Used.

Comment: Passenger loading zones are not provided on passenger vessels. They may be on the pier that serves a vessel but not on the vessel itself, therefore, section 209 has been marked as “not used.”


502 Parking Spaces

**502.1 General. **Bus, car and van parking spaces required to be accessible shall comply with 502.

**502.2 Accessible Parking Spaces. **Vehicle parking spaces shall be 156 inches (3965 mm) wide minimum and shall be 240 inches (6100 mm) in length minimum. Van parking spaces shall be 192 inches (4880 mm) wide minimum and shall be 240 inches (6100 mm) in length minimum. Over-the-road buses, transit and paratransit bus parking spaces shall provide an adjacent accessible loading area that is 96 inches (2440 mm) wide minimum and shall be 72 inches (1829 mm) long minimum (such as in the Access Board’s vehicle guidelines).

Comment: Unlike land based parking lots, an accessible parking space on a ferry will be a rectangle which contains both the space for a vehicle and the space for an accessible aisle. Marking is principally provided to remind crew members where to position vehicles that need accessible parking. The 156 inch width of the vehicle parking space equates to 96 inches for the vehicle and 60 inches for an access aisle which is consistent with the car parking space dimensions in a land based parking lot. Likewise, the 192 inch width of the van parking space provides 96 inches for the vehicle and 96 inches for an access aisle. It is also non-directional, allowing for vehicles to drive on from opposite ends of the ferry.

**502.3 **Not Used.

Comment: As the accessible parking space contains both the space for a vehicle and the space for the access aisle, section 502.3 is marked as “not used”, and section 502.3.1 through 502.3.3 have been deleted.

502.4 Deck Surfaces. Accessible parking spaces shall have surface slopes not steeper than 1:48 in all directions and shall comply with 302. Changes in level are not permitted.

**EXCEPTION: **This section shall not apply to vehicle tie-downs which are flush with the deck.

Comment: Compliance to section 302 was added because the original reference to 302 was located in section 502.3, which now is marked as not used.

Comment: Some ferries are designed so that vehicles can be secured to the deck. Often the securement device is connected to the deck at a point which is somewhat recessed. As the typical tie-down spot would not comply with section 302 and would also constitute a change in level on the surface, an exception was added to allow tie-downs in accessible parking spaces which are flush with the deck.

**502.5 Vertical Clearance. **Van parking spaces and a vehicular route to van parking spaces, shall provide a vertical clearance of 98 inches (2490 mm) minimum. Transit and paratransit bus parking spaces, and a vehicular route to such parking spaces, shall provide a vertical clearance of 114 inches (2895 mm) minimum. Over-the-road bus parking spaces, and a vehicular route to such parking spaces, shall provide a vertical clearance in accordance with other national standards.

Comment: It was noted that, for drive-through ferries, the vertical clearance needs to be maintained for one lane width along the entire path of travel of the vehicle, during loading and unloading.

Comment: See 208.3.

502.6 Marking. The surface of the accessible parking spaces shall be marked to distinguish them from parking areas which do not contain accessible parking spaces.

Comment: As this marking requirement is provide primarily to assist crew members, the area within the parking space containing the access aisle is not required to be marked so as to distinguish it from the area where the vehicle will be located.

503 Not Used.

Comment: See 209.